Each year, the holiday season produces frantic shoppers desperately searching for special gifts for their loved ones. More often than not, these customers eat before or after in order to survive the intensity of holiday shopping. In fact, 63% of the Black Friday and Thanksgiving shoppers also dined out at a restaurant. Instead of allowing customers to aimlessly wander through shopping center food courts, you can use texting to attract hungry guests to your restaurant.
With SMS marketing at your restaurant’s disposal, you’ll be able to guide patrons to your doors faster and in higher volume than ever before. Make the 2017 holiday season a cake walk with our guide to maximizing restaurant marketing and communications with SMS. Here’s how to get started:
Advertise Holiday Coupons to Increase Customer Database
What do restaurant patrons love most? Free food of course! What better way to attract customers to your restaurant holiday promotions than with a mobile coupon for one of your signature dishes. You can do this by advertising a text keyword, like “HOLIDAY” with the incentive of receiving a mobile coupon once the customer texts in. These mobile coupons will help generate high volumes of sales while increasing your customer database, as 57% of patrons visited a nearby restaurant after receiving an offer on their mobile device
Send Targeted Promotions to Increase Holiday Coupon Redemption
Most restaurants lack the ability to provide promotions that are relevant to each patron. Dazzle your patrons by using custom data to send targeted restaurant promotion deals. Essential information, such as a favorite dish can be collected, automatically recorded, and then implemented in the crafting of restaurant specials and messages. Sending personalized mobile coupons is the optimal method of increasing redemption rates, because mobile coupons are redeemed 10x more than paper coupons.
Promote Your Special Holiday Menus and Hours
The holiday season involves festive dishes and ingredients that restaurants must incorporate into their holiday menus in order to stand out from the competition. To make patrons aware of your menu and holiday hours, send out a text that includes the hours and the specials for the week, or even an MMS picture of your holiday menu and dishes.
A crucial restaurant marketing tip that can boost awareness of your holiday offerings is to utilize omni-channel communication. With an advanced SMS software that has an omni-channel feature, you’ll be able to share your menus across Facebook, Twitter, email, MMS, and voice broadcast to reach your entire audience on their preferred channel.
Share Mouth-Watering Pictures to Drive Traffic
Holiday decorations and visuals are something people especially enjoy during the holidays. The same goes for patrons looking for delectable holiday dishes. That’s why it’s crucial to send mouth-watering images of your food items, as it has been shown to increase sales by 30%. Satiate your audience’s hunger by sending high quality MMS messages of your dishes to increase the sales of certain dishes on your holiday menu.
Automate Heart-Warming Holiday Text Messages
Establishing a strong personal connection with patrons is something that takes tremendous effort to accomplish. Fortunately, an advanced text marketing service for restaurants allows them to automatically send personalized heart-warming messages to each of their patrons whenever they opt-in. Information, such as their name and birthdate, can be used to make these friendly holiday text messages more meaningful and make your restaurant the first on your guests’ minds.
Automate Table Reservations and Reduce No-Shows
Most restaurants allow you to call to reserve a table, some offer online reservation, but the most impressive and time-saving reservation method this holiday season will be through automated texting. Some patrons simply don’t like talking on the phone, but 78% of people would like to text a business. Allow your guests to text in to automatically get available table times. They can then reply “Yes” to have a specific time reserved by your staff, and then automatically receive reminders to reduce no-shows.
Establish Customer Loyalty through Holiday Gift Cards
Producing a loyalty program that’s worthwhile for your patrons is the ultimate way of bringing in repeat guests. An effective text loyalty program provides a text point system can deliver points whenever a patron redeems one of your holiday deals or dines at your restaurant. Replace cumbersome and easily misplaced paper punch cards with the elegance of a mobile program. Your loyalty rewards program will no longer be limited to just those willing to download mobile apps.
Streamline Holiday Shift Scheduling
The hustle and bustle of the holiday season can make scheduling employee shifts extremely difficult, as employees often make sporadic vacation plans. If a situation occurs where an employee cancels a shift last minute, utilize texting to send a blast to all employees asking if they want to pick up some extra hours. This helps you maintain a consistent number of staff when you need it the most.
Manage Separate Restaurant Locations through Access Control
For those larger restaurant chains, an important aspect to consider when conducting holiday marketing and communications is to maintain brand continuity across all locations. Access Control gives restaurants the ability manage multiple users under a single account, restricting access to only necessary features for each location. Messaging templates are shared between users and locations to ensure all restaurants are sending similar looking messages and produce a consistent holiday experience.
Example: Restaurants in New Jersey can only see New Jersey’s messaging distribution list and messaging templates.
SMS Surveys are the Best Way to Gather Feedback
Getting inside the mind of patrons and figuring out what they like and dislike can make all the difference when improving holiday promotions and your SMS marketing campaigns. Traditional survey methods are often lengthy and tedious, but texting streamlines this process and allows patrons to give their essential feedback anytime, while on the go. You can send these mobile surveys a day or even hours after service to ensure your holiday service is fresh in their minds and that you get the most accurate feedback possible.
What good is tasty food if you don’t have any customers to enjoy it? Make sure you’re keeping your tables filled during the holidays by using a channel that 91% of restaurant goers use at least once a week - Texting. Please click here to learn more on how to start using texting for your restaurant’s marketing and communication needs.